The US State Department updated its travel information for Israel in January, and it now warns American tourists of potential hazards in ultra-Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods.
In the paragraph talking about Jerusalem, the State Department calls upon US citizens touring the city to “exercise caution at religious sites,” and details locations to be avoided at certain times on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
The travel guide asks that American tourists “dress appropriately” when visiting certain neighborhoods and refrain from driving through those place on Friday nights, since assaults on secular visitors have occurred in those locations.
The State Department regularly updates its travel information and warnings, and Israel has been monitored for years. Recently ultra-Orthodox extremists have assaulted women who were dressed immodestly, raising tensions and exacerbating debate over the integration of ultra-Orthodox Jews into secular society.